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The details of three million candidates for the driving theory test have gone missing, Ruth Kelly has told MPs.
Names, addresses and phone numbers - but not financial data - were among details on a computer hard drive which went missing in the US in May.
It belonged to a contractor to the Driving Standards Agency, the transport secretary told MPs.
It is the latest in a series of data losses since discs with 25m people's details on were lost by HM Revenue.
Ms Kelly said the details of learner drivers had been formatted specifically for the contractor, Pearson's, and was not readily accessible or usable by third parties.